I know it is not the season for summer shawls made in cotton, but a huge dose of color is necessary at this time of year, hence I am releasing my Zest Shawl in English as a downloadable pattern on Ravelry. Beautifully worn by dancer Francesca Golfetto, brilliantly styled by Line Sekkingstad and stunningly captured by photographer Kim Müller. The Norwegian pattern was published in Familien Strikk at the end of August. The sample is knitted in Rowan Softknit Cotton (92% cotton, 8% polyamide, 50 g, 105 m/115 yds) using a 4.5 mm/US 7 needles, but can easily be worked in a different fiber such as wool as long as it has the same gauge. The dark lime color and the cable structure of Softknit Cotton made it so attractive to make a shawl. Sew on buttons if you want to button it into a shrug, and why not add a gorgeous brooch by Siri Berrefjord. See the play on color on the two different brooches photographed lying on the swatch, by Siri herself. The right side of the swatch is on the cover above, while the wrong side of the swatch is below. You can find more of her jewelry in Siris Skattkammer/Siri’s Treasure Trove. The cowls in two different sizes, make attractive collars.
Sizes: Shawl: One Size. Cowl: Small (Large)
Finished measurements: Shawl: 60 cm/23.5″ wide and 150 cm/59″ long Cowl: 44 (88) cm/17.25 (34.75)” wide and 25 (30) cm/9.75 (11.75)” high
I know hoping for sunshine late in October in Oslo is pushing my luck, but I actually did. Oh well, instead we had lots of rain during our photo shoot at Hvalstrand Bad – yes, that is a beach restaurant with a lovely diving tower we merely watched through the wet windows – on Thursday. Due to the heavy rain hence solid traffic, we were all running late for the photo shoot. The stunning model Alexandria Eissinger/Pholk flew in from Copenhagen late the evening before, the talented dress designer Judith Bech had to cancel her flight from Ålesund – since she is still waiting for her daughter to give birth to her first grandchild – but the brilliant shoe designer Monica Stålvang came bringing her Spring/Summer 2015 sample collection, the magnificent hair & make up stylist Sissel Fylling came with her magic boxes, and so did the skilled Made by Me editor Mary-Ann Astrup, plus marvelous photographer Eivind Røhne in addition to myself plus my husband as a handy man, that is.
Sissel set the tone for the day by cutting Alexandria’s hair, then we all wanted the same treatment, but there were no chance of that since we were all busy preparing for the indoor shoot by ironing, sweeping the floor, moving tables, taping shoes, discussing possible angles as well as the order to photograph each of the garments. As the photo shoot began we discussed the jewelry; whether to use designs made by Siri Berrefjord, silver jewelry by Kaja Gjedebo or my own Monies jewelry, in addition to selecting the perfect pair of shoes – not easy when there was such a selection to choose from. Above is one result, a new design called Atika consisting of a large cowl and long wrist warmers, stunningly worn by Alexandria over a matching felted wool dress by Judith Bech, silver earrings and ring by Kaja Gjedebo plus shoes by Monica Stålvang – see a few more sneak peaks here: instagram and here: instagram.
I am finishing off another design just in time for the photoshoot tomorrow, and I have started work on submissions to Wool People 9, published by the American yarn company Brooklyn Tweed, and to Interweave Knits. The first company accept submissions by e-mail while the second want the swatches and all essential info sent by post, hence it needs to be planned in good time. Here you can see the Wool People 9 Mood Boards and read the Interweave’s Contributor Guidelines and study the Content Submission Form. The magazine Close-Up 18 is one I have ordered from the Scandinavian trend institute called Pej gruppen in Denmark, which usually have a large book stand at the Gave/Gift & Interior Fair at Lillestrøm, outside of Oslo. They had one this August too, but did not have the Knit & Tricot magazine to my dismay, hence I had to order it. I love looking at garment styles, colors and stitch patterns chosen. They help to inspire, to release ideas, and to try out new paths.
Tone Cecilie Nystrøm, aka ToneCecilie on Ravelry, test knitted this gorgeous version of my Autumn Symphony Jacket with the wrap, and a self composed hat in March. These fabulous photos are taken by her daughter, Sara aged 12. I was taken back by her bold combination of colors; Melange clear apple green and melange purple in the stunning Ask-Hifa 2. Tone Cecilie chose size M, and did not do any alterations to it. She is a great test knitter since she can easily spot any mathematical errors straight away, and improved the pattern together, with the other test knitters. The lace pattern, called Chinese Lace, is one of those that are hard to learn by heart even for knitters who usually memorize patterns instantly, just as Tone Cecilie does. I was so fortunate to meet her in person last month when she attended two of my workshops for Strikk og Drikk/Knit and Drink in Stavanger, on the South-West coast of Norway, and study her jacket in detail. Thank you, Tone Cecilie!
Above is the back view of the a-line jacket. The Norwegian pattern with sizes from S to 3XL, bust measurements from 92 cm/36.25″ to 137 cm/54″ was published in the magazine Familien issue 20/2014, while the English pattern is available as a downloadable pdf from Ravelry.
More than a week ago I received a large bag filled with lovely balls of yarn from the Italian yarn producer, Mondial organized by their Scandinavian agent, a former yarn company owner himself, Thomas Kvist (read: yarn ambassador de luxe). Mondial is one of the oldest yarn companies in Europe, located in the city of Brescia, set between Milan and Verona. If you need yet another reason in addition to Mondial’s yarn shop that is, I found several more here: All of Italy in one city – youtube. The only reason I have not started knitting with any of these luscious balls is the upcoming photo shoot, which seemed ages away when the date was set, but now only a week away. I will reveal more about the photo shoot when I am allowed to. As I am sure you can guess, it was easy to pick a number of favorites among these balls including the complete Deluxe series. I can finally try out knitting with fibers I have yet to test like Angora (yes, it is responsibly sourced), and try out Mondial’s Cashmere, merino wool and Perle: In both Italian and Norwegian it means pearl as well as bead – perfect for this gorgeous beaded yarn mix. A large selection of their yarns are already available in Norway at Flamingo Garn og Hobby at Gressvik near Fredrikstad, Perle is available at Tjorven in Oslo – do look at the beautiful shades of this yarn – and the number of yarn shops selling Mondial yarn is rising. I also loved looking at their pattern booklets for immaculate Italian styling, see more at this American online store: Knittingfever.com/brand/mondial. Now, I am ready to visit Mondial & Brescia!
This sweater is not new, since it was published in Norwegian in issue 2/2014 of Made By Me, but I would like to share my ideas behind it, and the photos my husband took of me wearing Cable Round Sweater. Here is my introduction to it: The light denim blue colour in the stunning Norsk Pelsull/Norwegian Pelt Yarn from Hifa, captivated me. I chose a round cable with a band on. By framing the cables with a rib, the sweater became figure hugging and a perfect accompany to your favourite jeans or trouser. It ends with a square narrow neckband so that you can choose if you want to add the matching cowl. This is my idea of a simple pattern; The Sweater, both the sleeves and the body are worked in the round to the armhole and then worked back and forth in rows, using 3.5 mm/US 4 needles. The cowl is worked in the round as a long tube, and then the ends are joined together with mattress stitches but you could easily use a temporary cast-on method and graft the ends together. The English pattern will be test knitted in my Ravelry group later this month, and I know to my delight that a few of you are waiting eagerly for it.
Here is another photo this time with the cowl hanging loose making the sweater looking more dressy. The cowl is half cable half rib so that you can see both stitch patterns. There is no shaping on the body of the sweater since the ribbing holds it in and make it appear shaped.
View from the back. I have a long back and long arms as you can see but both lengths can easily be adjusted to your preference. The neck band is picked up and knitted afterwards in stockinette stitch, with a bit of shaping and a folding line so that you attach it on the wrong side at the end. I co-operated with brilliant Re-design stylist Kristin Elise Halkjelsvik for Made By Me, and she suggested styling it with a pair of tight black studded trousers, a white mens shirt, an orange chiffon scarf with matching clutch plus we both agreed that Monica Stålvang Carmen boots in Petrol were perfect with it. Kristin also suggested beautiful orange cuff links by Siri Berrefjord. Below is a stunning picture from the photo shoot of Pia Cecilie/Team Models, hair and make up styled by Janne Skarpeid Hermansen, taken by Eivind Røhne.
Fairly new that is, since it was recently published in the Norwegian magazine, Made By Me in their autumn issue 2/2014. But I am keen to show a few more views of it and how the cummerbund works with the bolero. I fell for the lace and cable stitch pattern when I was designing the wrist warmers and cowl for the book submission to “Strikkesidas Favoritter“. Hence I wanted to design a larger garment with it using the bouncy Embla- Hifa 3, a pure wool, in a dark blue purple and a 4 mm/US 6 needle; Delicate lyres made by lace and cables stitches used in panels surrounded by stocking stitch makes this bolero perfect to use on top of a wide dress or skirt on a cold day. Lyre Bolero is fitted and begins just above the waist with increases to the bust. Worked in parts to add stabilizing seams, but with long sleeves worked in the round. A stunning cummerbund made of tucks adds length and elegance. Test knit of the English pattern will take place in my Ravelry Group, date to be confirmed, before it will be released in my Ravelry store.
The bolero is worked flat in pieces, while the sleeves are worked in the round. Discontinue the Lyre Pattern and continue in stockinette stitch when decreasing. The cummerbund can easily be adjusted to your waist measurement by adding or detracting stitches to the numbers given; the tucks are made to meet but not overlap. The ties are added on the width of the last hem.
I decided to only add an I-cord bind off around the neck since I wanted to leave space for a shirt collar and possibly a silk scarf commonly used with national costumes here in Norway. While I picked up stitches along each front to make an identical hem. No buttonholes were made since I imagined using either a shawl pin or a magnificent brooch or two to hold it together.
As you can see the cummerbund changes the bolero into a jacket seen from the back especially. My idea was to wear it with the bolero on one occasion and without it on others when you prefer to use a leather or woven belt instead.
Below is the jacket, styled with re-design shirt and table cloth as skirt by Kristin Elise Halkjelsvik, aka Makeløs/Remarkable worn by model Pia Cecilie/Team Models, hair & make up by Janne Skarpeid Hermansen and photographed by Eivind Røhne for Made by Me. Do notice how cleverly Kristin styled the belt around the neck. It fits so well with my love of using accessories how you like them best!
I wanted to share some of my photos from Ystad in southern Sweden, where we stayed for a night before we took the ferry to the Danish island of Bornholm. Just as Police Inspector Kurt Wallander, in Henning Mankell’s crime books and the televised series called Wallander, I wanted to walk along the beach, but did not use the guide you can download to walk “In the footsteps of Wallander”. Above is one of my many photos of the long glorious beach on the outskirts of the town. Below is another facing the other side of the pier. All along it behind the first row of trees is a popular walk- and bicycle path. It helps to explain the overwhelming number of bicycles parked outside the train station at all times. My husband had initially planned to have his photo taken outside the police station, often shown in the Swedish television series, but was content just walking about, after the 6 hours drive south from Oslo.
We stayed at the Hotel Continental, the former Hótel Du Sud from 1829, which still had some of its former glory in tact, and offered a delicious breakfast buffet. The County Council of Skåne had booked a table for their breakfast meeting, I noticed and could not help nodding in approval of their choice. The hotel has featured in several of the episodes of Wallander, so we did feel like walking onto the set.
Whether you have seen the series or read the crime books, it is a lovely town to stroll about in, with so many historic buildings, due to a settlement dating back to the 11th century, and well kept flower beds.
We used all the time we had in Ystad before our ferry departure to Rønne at Bornholm. I did find a yarn shop but managed not to spend any money on yarn. Well aware it would change as soon as we reached the small town of Allinge and Strik Bornholm. I was right, you know. Below is the Monastery from 1267 where the church is used for temporary exhibitions (as well as services), we passed during our stroll in Ystad.
Below from the main square with the old town hall in front and the St. Mary’s Church, the oldest building in the town, in the background. Read about Ystad’s history in a nutshell here: Ystad. As you can see the weather was beautiful at the beginning of September. Next time I would like to go for a swim…
Hot off the press, is this book with 60 patterns made by members of the Facebook group Strikkesida/Knittingpage and selected by a jury, consisting of its founder and moderators: Aase Lynne, Kari-Anne Dal-Pedersen and Torill Strand, in addition to designer Sidsel J. Høivik and crafts editor at Gyldendal; Ann Kristin Nås Gjerde. The whole group, currently with 66 142 members, have been waiting for this book to be available in print, months after the submission details where posted in February this year. Initially, I had not planned to submit but Ann Kristin convinced me to do so since parts of the funds will go to Røde Kors/Red Cross, Kirkens Bymisjon/The Church City Mission and Frelsesarmeen/Salvation Army, plus that I will keep the publication rights to the pattern. Just before the initial deadline of 1st of March, I was in the middle of designing one series of designs for Made By Me so I opted for a set of wrist warmers and a cowl. The Cardigan on the cover is designed by Kristin Wiola Ødegård. See my review of her first book here: Strikk Med Raske Pinner.
The color I chose was Terracotta Red in the lovely yarn Embla-Hifa 3 – a pure wool. The set is knitted on a 4 mm/US 6 in the round, I chose a stitch pattern which resembles a lyre with both lace and cables. My design is one of the ones featured on the back cover, see above. The book contains a large variety of patterns for mittens; scarves; hats and headband; wrist warmers; socks and slippers; cushions; children’s dresses; sweaters for children, women and men; kitchen towels and cloths; blanket; dog sweater; trousers; vests, pouff cover; cardigan; boots cosy; briquettes cosy; skirt; plastic bag holder cosy; down mat cosy. See more inside the book here: Gyldendal.
All of us who were chosen to take part were asked to write a brief introduction, and include a portrait photo. The technical editor wanted to change from my use of a red box for the repeat to brackets outside which are more common in Norway, and I received a pdf of my pages for approval. None of the models used in the book are professional but all the pictures are taken by photographer Ann Sissel Holthe, aka Fat Monkey.
If you read Norwegian, you can take part in the draw of a yarn kit for the cardigan on the cover ,and the Flagglue by subscribing to the publisher’s craft blog: Puff and post & share a comment on Facebook about it, see Puff.